Summary: Building a church culture with the example of Solomon's House.
I want to talk with you today about building, because you see, we’re builders.
From the time we’re born - we start building. You probably don't even realise what an expert and complex builder you are. (Simon does) As babies, we spend all our energy and effort building bodies and vocabularies. As young adults, we build our knowledge and our skill. We are always building relationships with others. Eventually, we will build a special relationship with a special person. And from this one special relationship, we’ll build a marriage. Together we’ll build a house and turn it into a home. And then we’ll build a family. We’ll build estates, bank accounts, built a Super and many other things. We all build because, you see, we’re builders.
God is a builder he told; Noah build an Ark, Moses build a tabernacle, David build anation, Solomon a temple Nehemiah build a wall. God is building you and using you in building a place.
And you are living stones that God is building into his spiritual temple. What’s more, you are his holy priests. Through the mediation of Jesus Christ, you offer spiritual sacrifices that please God. (1 Peter 2:5 NLT)
Living stones cut from the quarries of this world, and developed and fashioned, prepared into a useful size and condition. The ultimate in this innate desire to build is building the temple of God. You are one of those stones that is being developed.
He is building a spiritual temple. We have been reading this week about Solomon who was building a physical temple. It is a type a shadow of what Jesus is doing. Solomon is a type of Christ, his name means "bringer of peace", we know what Jesus does - he brings peace. There is no peace in the heart outside of Christ. He brings a peace that surpasses understanding
Why is he building a temple place for God? No doubt to bring glory to God and men to his glory. Let's see what is possible.
Let's turn to our Wednesday reading from this week.
When the queen of Sheba heard of Solomon’s fame, she came to Jerusalem to test him with hard questions. She arrived with a large group of attendants and a great caravan of camels loaded with spices, large quantities of gold, and precious jewels. When she met with Solomon, she talked with him about everything she had on her mind. (2 Chronicles 9:1 NLT)
She was seeking something she didn't have. She was powerful and wealthy but something was missing and she had heard of what Solomon was doing. She, like a lot of people, had power, prestige and riches, the things the world would say are symbols of what it mean to have made it. She knew she hadn't.
She didn't need to come the long journey from (1600km) Ethiopia. That is a long way on an elephants back. The preparation is enormous. She wasn't needy, but she was hungry and thirsty.
Note it doesn't say God it says Solomon that is important. Because a lot of people who see that is what I want, don't know it is God. They can't understand an unseeing God. People are his glory, you are his glory we are his glory. We are his sign of power.
No one has it together but together we have it.
The glory will cover the earth as the waters cover the see. People come seeking, thirsty, because of us. Salt his glory
He is building a house here that will show his glory.
Solomon had answers for all her questions; nothing was too hard for him to explain to her. When the queen of Sheba realized how wise Solomon was, and when she saw the palace he had built, she was overwhelmed. (2 Chronicles 9:2-4 NLT)
She didn't get an explanation of who God is, she got an experience.
Think of a situation where you had bulletproof facts, reason, and logic on your side, and believed there was absolutely no way the other person could say no to your perfectly constructed argument and proposal. To do so would be impossible, you figured, because there was no other logical solution or answer.
But the other person dug in his heels and refused to budge. He wasn’t swayed by your logic. Were you flabbergasted?
A few years ago, neuroscientist Antonio Damasio made a groundbreaking discovery. He studied people with damage in the part of the brain where emotions are generated. He found that they seemed normal, except that they were not able to feel emotions. But they all had something peculiar in common: they couldn’t make decisions. They could describe what they should be doing in logical terms, yet they found it very difficult to make even simple decisions, such as what to eat.